According to research carried out by digital marketing agency Greenlight, there were 3.1 million searches made on Google UK for hotels across the world in August and of those 1.8 million (58 per cent) were in the UK while 382,610 (12 per cent) were for short-haul destinations and 236,710 (8 per cent) were for long-haul destinations.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, following its hosting of last year’s Olympic Games, London was the biggest draw, attracting 13 per cent of queries while Brighton followed with 4 per cent of domestic searches.
‘Hotels in London’, ‘London hotels’ and ‘Cheap hotels in London’ were the three most popular search terms while Blackpool, York, Edinburgh and Manchester hotel searches were also high up on the list.
When it came to booking engines, Laterooms.com was the most visible in the organic listings, said Greenlight, taking a 22 per cent share of visibility, while Booking.com was the most prominent advertiser in the paid listings.
However, in organic listings four hotel chains also came high, showing that hotel websites can still compete with OTAs.
Technology and service
Meanwhile, technology could play an even greater role in providing good customer service in hotels in the future with figures from AppyHotel.com showing that 49 per cent of hotel guests would prefer to ask for help from hotel staff using technology rather than speaking to them face-to-face.
The survey of 1,000 British hotel-goers found that almost a quarter (23 per cent) would actually prefer to chat online with a hotel representative than do so in person.
Isabella Glendinning, VP sales and marketing Europe at AppyHotel.com, the new app platform, said: “It’s a clear indication that technology is not only providing hotel guests with a variety of platforms to express their views to management, but is also becoming an integral part of a hotel’s customer service offering.
“You could say that the research shows traits that are typically British, but the reality is that mobile and tablet apps, and other web-based communication platforms are time-saving options for both the customer and hotel.
"Confrontation is something that most hotel guests and staff want to avoid, and the growth of mobile and tablet devices means that despite being in the same building as hotel staff, requests and concerns can be addressed remotely.”